An WC:M Update and Snow For Winnipeg

Just a short update, somewhat unrelated to the weather.  I’m away on work travel right now so I haven’t had too much to look at the weather.  I just quickly wanted to say that I’ve begun to make some improvements to the Weather Central: Mobile site.  I have added all sites through the Kivalliq region of Nunavut, as well as improving the colour coding for the warning/watch banners.  I plan on doing quite a few neat little things with the site over the winter, so stay tuned.

Onto Winnipeg’s weather.  Just briefly, today should have scattered flurries, except for areas in the lee of the lakes, where lake effect snow should result in locally heavy accumulating snow bands.  This will be of particular note if you need to travel on the Trans-Canada Highway near the Portage la Prairie region.  The snow will taper off overnight as the winds swing back around to the southeast ahead of the next system coming in.

All current indications are that this “Alberta Clipper” of sorts will provide Winnipeg with it’s first major snowfall of the season.  Currently, it looks that all of the precipitation will fall as snow, with accumulations closing in on the 10cm mark.  This event should start late Thursday, and taper off by mid-morning on Friday at the latest.

Get your snow shovels ready!

Snow on the Way For Winnipeg

Our stretch of beautiful early-November weather will come to an end this week as a low pressure system moves across Southern Manitoba bringing rain and snow and leaving behind more seasonal weather.

A sharp upper trough sitting over the Pacific coast has helped set up a southerly flow throughout most of the Eastern Prairies over the past few days, bringing with it unseasonably warm and dry weather to Winnipeg and the Red River Valley.

Over the past day, however, the trough has moved eastwards and is now situated over the Rocky Mountains. Warm, moist air has been surging northwards out of the trough for the past day or two, bringing plenty of precipitation to Saskatchewan. Currently, a surface low exists in Nebraska, with an inverted trough extending all the way up to the Swan River region. A cold front is sitting in this trough, with a warm front extending across the northern regions of the Manitoba Lakes. In this visible image, the fronts are shown by the cloud/clear sky boundary over Manitoba.

Visible Satellite Image for Prairies
Visible Satellite Image of Southern Prairies/Northern Plains for Tuesday Morning

This system has brought snow to western Saskatchewan, with some areas receiving more than 10cm of snow. The weather station at the Swift Current Airport reported 13cm of snow by 10AM today and a report of 10cm of snow was received from Stewart Valley, located just north of Swift Current. Further north and east of the Swift Current/Cypress Hills regions, most of the precipitation has thus far fallen as rain, however will switch over to snow by this evening. A few pockets of freezing rain have also shown up over east-central regions, close to the fronts.

This whole system will slowly progress eastwards today and tonight, but most of it’s movement will be northwards through the next 36 hours. By tomorrow evening, rain and snow will have moved into Southwestern Manitoba.

Precipitation Accumulations for Wednesday Night
Precipitation Accumulations from the GEM-REG for Wednesday Night; 5-10mm of Rain is expected for the RRV before switching over to Snow on Thursday morning.

On Wednesday night, cold air is injected into this system and it begins to intensify and move off. By Thursday morning, rain will have moved into the RRV, and should switch over to snow relatively early in the morning as the winds back around the the northwest. There may be a slight chance of a brief period of freezing rain as the changeover from rain to snow happens, however I would expect it to be rather unlikely.

Precipitation Accumulations from GEM-GLB for Thursday
Precipitation Accumulation from the GEM-GLB for Thursday.

The possibility exists for 2-5cm of snow in areas close to the International Border and 5-10cm for areas a bit further north, including Winnipeg, on Thursday. Environment Canada will likely issue some sort of notice on Wednesday as a heads up to the first significant snowfall of the season for the RRV.

This system will move out Thursday night at a much quicker pace than it moved into our area. Skies will clear by Friday and we will be left with daytime highs in the -1 to -3 range with light winds.

So get out and enjoy the weather today. Mostly sunny skies should persist through most of the day and the expected daytime high should be around 14 degrees with relatively light winds. Winnipeg has a shot at breaking the record high today; the current daytime high is 14.4 degrees, set in 1923.  Unofficially, Island Lake and Pinawa have both already broken their record highs for today.

So enjoy the warm weather, just don’t forget where you stored your heavier coats!

Southern Manitoba Under Influence of Record Breaking Low

Southern Manitoba Under Influence of Record Breaking Low

Rain Rain Rain

After nearly an entire month with no precipitation, this week will bring plenty of rain to the RRV and bring us to the edge of winter.

A powerful low pressure system will move across the RRV tonight and through Tuesday bringing with it plenty of rain.  As the low begins to approach the Ontario border, it will deepen dramatically bring unpleasant conditions to Southern Manitoba.

The rain should begin this evening into the overnight period as the low approaches giving us only about 5-10mm.  As the low passes on Tuesday, winds will shift around to the north and increase to 40 to 50 km/h.  This gusty north wind will whip plenty of rain that will develop along a elongated hang-back trough resulting in blustery, wet conditions amid a dropping temperature through Wednesday.  Total rainfall amounts will probably be in the 15-25mm range, however could be higher in a few places.

Snow looks unlikely for most of the RRV right now, however the rain may switch over to snow for extreme western edges of the RRV on Wednesday as cooler air is able to poke in over the higher terrain.  Accumulations should be somewhat negligible, however.

So, a wet (and soon to be windy) week is ahead of us.  The clouds should clear out Thursday and we will be left with cooler, albeit sunny, weather.